All Nippon Airway’s (ANA) launched a groundbreaking virtual reality (VR) art gallery, called IJC Museum. That’s right, Art itself exists now in a floating virtual world.

The world’s first “Museum in the Cloud”, the IJC Museum is the latest innovation from ANA’s long-running “Is Japan Cool?” initiative, which was established by the carrier to help highlight some of the hip, fun, and often insanely cool travel and leisure destinations that Japan has to offer.

Developed in response to a 2015 report from the Japan Tourism Agency which found that museums and art galleries had scored an abysmal twelfth place finish on a list of experiences visitors most hoped to enjoy during their trip to Japan – behind more traditional activities such as enjoying Japanese food, shopping, visiting historic sites, and even exploring “rice-field scenery” – the museum became a priority when ANA realized that the art tourism market had nowhere to go but up. Literally.

So, ANA took the show to the clouds, or, more accurately, the cloud, and the IJC Museum was born.

Merging the best of Japanese art and technology to dazzling effect, the museum uses cutting-edge WebGL 3D representations to re-create artwork in a virtual space.

Featuring pieces from seven of Japan’s leading multi-media artists – including Nerhol, Yayoi Kusama, Manabu Ikeda, just to name a few….the museum utilizes VR to display a perspective and scale that would be almost impossible to showcase in a more traditional setting.

The Exhibition is currently featuring: Nerhol, Yayoi Kusama, Manabu IkedaHisashi Tenmyouya, Tabaimo, and Taku Obata, Kohei Nawa are coming soon, in April 2016. A total of 7 exhibitions will be available this April.

Allowing visitors to view installations in a 360° panorama, specially curated by an actual architect, the museum also brings to life the experience of walking through a real-life art gallery. And with the addition of vivid, hi-def textures, the project creates VR replicas of art that are almost identical to their real-life counterparts.

Currently available for viewing on a number of different devices without the need for special plugins or Apps, the IJC Museum can be accessed directly from ANA’s “Is Japan Cool?” website. And the best part of all is that admission to this museum is totally free and there are no lines to speak of.

Visit the website:
(and bookmark your favorite art gallery!)

Sources: ANA Cool Japan
All Image credits belong to: ANA Cool Japan and respective artists.

Screen Shot 2016-03-20 at 1.14.09 pm Screen Shot 2016-03-20 at 1.15.53 pm2Screen Shot 2016-03-20 at 1.14.29 pmthumb_2thumb_3